Non-Bank Entities can soon set up ATMs
The Central Bank will allow non-Bank entities to set up automated teller machines [ATMs] and point of sale [POS] terminals as it ramps up efforts to promote card-based transactions across the country. The move will help people in distant parts of the country to settle their transactions without going to Banks as some private companies already have plans to install a large number of ATMs according to a Bangladesh Bank official. At present, only Banks are allowed to set up ATM and POS, but they are now showing little interest in expanding the facilities given the high maintenance cost, additional manpower and high security measures. The Central Bank has been working on the issue for long and has almost completed all relevant work to roll out the service. A guideline will be issued within the next couple of months, the BB official added. The intended companies, which will set up ATMs and POS, will have to take licenses from the Central Bank to act as a payment system provider [PSO]. The PSOs will have to deposit Tk 50 lakh with the Central Bank.
Beef up Local Govt to boost Service Delivery
Bangladesh has made remarkable progress in human and infrastructure development, yet access to quality education, healthcare, safe drinking water and sanitation is still a far cry, according to a top World Bank official. There are several factors that hinder progress in the delivery of basic services. One factor is the absence of a well-functioning local government institution in Bangladesh, according to WB Country Director for Bangladesh and Bhutan Mercy Miyang Tembon. The South Asian Network on Economic Modelling [Sanem] and The World Bank organized the two-day event on “Subnational finance and local service delivery”. Planning Minister MA Mannan inaugurated the event where researchers from India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Pakistan were also present. Bangladesh now has an administratively decentralized system with various levels of elected local government institutions [LGIs] thanks to the series of legal reforms brought in recent years. Statistics also show that Bangladesh indeed is among the least decentralized countries among the world. Share of LGI expenses is 7 percent of the total national budget.
Trade War helps raise Apparel Export to US
The US-China trade war is directly benefitting Bangladeshi exporters, with garment shipments to the US increasing over 3 percent this year compared to that last year according to the leaders of Bangladesh Garment Buying House Association yesterday. Last year the shipments to Bangladesh’s largest export destination decreased 2 percent year-on-year, said the association’s President Kazi Iftequer Hossain at a press conference at its office in Dhaka. Though Bangladesh will continue to benefit from the trade skirmishes, the biggest gainer is Vietnam which has received more work orders. The biggest challenges are fast adoption of automation and exploration of marketing avenues alongside meeting shortages of skilled mid-level manpower. Some Bangladeshi garment exporters are already in business with Amazon, a US-based global e-commerce giant, and industry insiders say marketing through one of the world’s largest online retailers leads to lesser dependence on human resources.
Badly performing Stocks fly Amid Market Slump
At a time when investors are losing money on good stocks, gambling on underperforming companies is rampant. In the last three weeks, the prices of 10 badly-performing companies’ stocks soared 9 to 37 percent for seemingly no reason, when the overall market fell 4.26 percent, according to data from the Dhaka Stock Exchange. The companies too informed the DSE that there is no reason for the abnormal price hike of the stocks. The share price of Kay & Que, which was upgraded to ‘B’ category last year after languishing in the ‘Z’ category for seven years, jumped to Tk 235 from Tk 179 in the last three weeks. If a company fails to provide less than 10 percent dividend then it is put in the ‘B’ category and if it fails to provide any dividend it becomes a ‘Z’ category stock. Kay & Que’s earnings per share [EPS] stood at Tk 0.65 in the last three quarters, down from Tk 0.69 a year earlier. In the last two weeks, only three companies from the ‘A’ category were among the top 10 gainers. The three companies also have low market capitalization, meaning they are easy to manipulate.
Adopting IR 4.0 new challenge for RMG Sector
Government’s policy support, creating skilled manpower and embracing global marketing trend are vital for the country’s export-oriented apparel sector, buying house. They added that adoption of advanced technologies of Industrial Revolution [IR 4.0] like automation, robotics and artificial intelligence are also essential for the readymade garments [RMG] sector. Leaders of Bangladesh Garment Buying House Association [BGBA] highlighted the needs of the industry at a press briefing at its office in the city. The government has included buying house operators in the Textile Act 2018 to ensure transparency, order and discipline. Hailing the government’s initiative to establish several textile institutes in the country, the BGBA leader suggested adopting public-private partnership model to set up the institutions. Bangladesh is now getting a good number of technically educated individuals for the apparel sector, but they lack employability as they are not aware of the new technologies like automation and artificial intelligence. The BGBA leaders said that around 80 per cent of the total business of the apparel sector is conducted via buying houses in the country. There are around 500 members of the BGBA though the actual number is said to be several times higher
EBL arranges Term Loan of for Butterfly
Eastern Bank Ltd. [EBL] as mandated lead arranger has arranged a syndicated Term Loan facility of BDT 2,086.91 million for Butterfly Manufacturing Co. Ltd [BMCL] for their new CKD Refrigerator manufacturing plant at Bhaluka, Mymensingh. The plant will manufacture energy efficient non-frost refrigerator under the technical collaboration of world-renowned brand LG Electronics. A deal closing ceremony was held at The Westin Dhaka hotel.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
| ↑69.31 ||↑0.26%|
|FTSE100||7,282.34|| ↓11.17 || ↓0.15%|
|Nikkei 225|| 21,199.57|| ↑113.63 ||↑0.54%|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$ 56.52 || ↑ 0.22 ||↑ 0.39%|
|Crude Oil (Brent)|| $ 58.44||↑ 0.18||↑ 0.31%|
|Gold Spot||$ 1,506.82 ||↓ 12.23|| ↓ 0.81% |
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 82.9249|
|GBP 1||BDT 101.858|
|EUR 1||BDT 91.4065|
|INR 1||BDT 1.15546|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.<